Proof of the Superiority of the Gospel- Jesus Never Changes
The author of Hebrews exhorts his readers to persevere in their trust in the Gospel, “Do not be led away by diverse and strange teachings…” Why? “…for it is good for the heart to be strengthened by grace, not food.” (Hebrews 13:9). He warns to them to not commit to food laws or regulations in such a way that dislodges the Gospel from the center. However, the ground for which the author makes this statement is found in the previous verse: “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever” (13:8). One could spend a great deal of time reflecting on the substance of this sentence, but I wanted to make a few observations on how this sentence is the basis for the superiority of the Gospel:
- It is God’s Gospel – The phrase, Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and tomorrow has significant implications for who Jesus is. He is the divine Son of God – God himself. The basis for the superiority of the Gospel is that its God’s. The Gospel is God’s plan to forgive sins and all other plans (food laws and regulations) are false plans. Likewise, all other plans for a clean conscience, joy, or contentment fail since they are not God’s.
- The Gospel is based upon the Person of Jesus Christ. The entire epistle bases the superiority of Jesus Christ and his Gospel upon the uniqueness of his Person. Jesus, being the divine Son of God, never changes. The author of Hebrews is asking his readers to consider Jesus the “author and perfecter of our faith” (12:2). Jesus is greater than Moses, he has a superior priesthood, and secures a greater covenant because of who he is. The Gospel is superior because Jesus is superior.
- Since God never changes, neither does his grace. The encouragement that Christians have is that since God never changes we can trust that his Gospel never will. Other “plans” have no such grounding.